Keystroke Lotteries: A Speculative Essay Part III Postscript “Keystroke Lotteries: A Speculative Essay” stems from an idea I got around Christmas 2003, watching a sales-rep hand out lottery-tickets as gifts in the office where I was employed as a proofreader. I wondered how much, if any, additional work I might do to get an additional ticket. In the years that followed I would occasionally Google as many likely keywords and phrases as I could think of, to see if anyone had already discussed or even implemented a program based on the idea of working online for lottery tickets.
As far as I can tell, no one had and wóz żelazny no one has still. Finally, in October 2008, I submitted the essential idea to Google’s misbegotten Project 10 ^ 100, anonse praca lublin sprzątanie condensed to fit its online template (see below). After the Project ended bathetically (or perhaps pathetically), I expanded the core idea and put it on Google’s Knol website, where it supposedly generated 8,000 or so hits. (It actually generated two or opiekunka usa three comments). But Knol, like the Project, was a turkey that never flew.
It’s shutting down in May of 2012 and has invited its authors to move to WordPress (where you can find this essay posted on my blog of sorts, http://keystrokelotteries.wordpress.com/). Project 10 ^ 100 version Title: Auction-funded work lotteries. 150 characters: Growing internet ubiquity may eventually encourage virtual groups of people to work simultaneously on demand for lottery tickets. 300 words: Describe idea in more depth.
Hiring a large and ever-changing staff of typesetters to work on the same document would obviate proofreading because it’s unlikely that any one person’s errors would be duplicated by the majority. Instead they would be overwritten by others as a computer assembled a matrix of consensus-validated keystrokes. But paying so many typesetters a market-rate wage wouldn’t be economical. Instead, consider a lottery ticket.
However small its payout or winning chances, it can’t be completely valueless before its drawing, given a practical way to obtain one for the least amount of value or work. On a computer, the smallest unit of work is a keystroke or mouse click. So the solution may be to link an essentially random group-validated keystroke to an online lottery-ticket. This method could initially function for any kind of online work requiring little or no interpretation by typists.
In time it might successfully be applied to less restrictive kinds of work. To attract the maximum number of participants, it probably would be essential that a single group-validated keystroke could win the drawing. The lottery itself would be funded by those needing the work done, by bidding on a place in a queue, or for a specific period of work, and/or total number of ‘players’ (workers). Such lotteries could be very large, but given the small unit of work needed to win, some people might not disdain a smaller payoff with a larger winning chance, contrary to conventional lottery-design and player psychology.
150 words: Problem or issue addressed. Around the world people have computers and access to the internet.
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